Monday, July 20, 2015

LIfe is too short to be negative

I decided to raise the vibration level of my Facebook feed this past week. All the hate, negativity and plain stupidity some people share wore my spirit thin, so I decided to do my small part to change that, if only for a while.

I came across a stash of old photographs recently that I’d scanned from my mother’s favorite photo
albums, and I posted a few dozen old pictures.

If someone had wanted to see pictures before the Internet and Facebook, they would have had to do it the old fashioned way. It required a visit to grandma’s house or to the home of an elderly relative who collected pictures through the years.

When I was younger, I spent countless hours pouring through old picture books and boxes. Each time a family member or friends visited my mother’s house., one of the rituals was flipping through those old albums. Someone would see a picture of a long-forgotten loved one and infectious laughter would bubble up like cool water from an artesian well.

It’s hard not to get nostalgic when looking through old photographs, so my Facebook diversion worked…at least for a while. All of a sudden my timeline filled with loving comments about the pictures I’d posted.

I know video is all the rage, but with a video you see a lot of footage and a little magic. Still photographs are more powerful to me because they capture an instant in time. You’ll see happiness, surprise and sometimes you’ll see profound sadness.

In years past when slide projectors were all the rage, I’ve heard people complain about friends inviting them over for dinner and then hijacking them to watch vacation slideshows.  I actually loved watching vacation slideshows.

The best part of Facebook is when people share news about their families and friends. Oftentimes, you learn from Facebook when someone gets a new job, graduates from college, has a new grandbaby or when someone passes away. That’s news I can use.

I personally don’t share my views on politics, religion, the Confederate flag or what level of Candy Crush I’m on. To be honest, I’m not interested in the views of others on these topics either.

Most of us have our personal views on hot-button topics, and all the Facebook posts in the world will not change our minds about them. Especially when the views are vulgar or mean-spirited. When these threads come across my timeline, I hide them from view. If a Facebook friend consistently shares things that anger me, I unfriend them. Life is too short for all that negativity.

I wish more people would focus on what’s good about this world, instead of all that is wrong. We can rant until our fingers bleed on Facebook and never fix one thing.

My side trip down memory lane probably didn’t fix anything either, but judging from all the comments, I think it was a welcome diversion.


  1. Your statements are right on. Like you, I love old photos. I love other people's old photos. The rants on Facebook are so tiresome. Some rants have reminded me why I know longer am close friends with a person I haven't seen in years. Like you, I hide the post. Then, if I continue to get the negative posts, I unfriend them.

  2. It is a welcome diversion indeed. I certainly agree with you about negativity. I am a naturally happy person (I know; it's disgusting but there you are.) so I have instinctively been drawn to happy people. It keeps me young.

  3. Thought this was about the ocean from the title. I think you messed up your qwtrey.

    My mom used to say "Life is too short" anytime we complained about anything...and she was right.

  4. Oh yes life is short. I really do not like negative, but I do get there at times. I also love old pictures and yes, there was nothing like the old black felt pages with pictures lovingly put in with the little corner holders. AND Then the shoe box full of those not yet put in a book and probably never would get there. Memories. Daddy used to say preaching to the choir does nothing but boost your own ego.

  5. It's a good thing you're doing here, Rick. There is an almost neurotic emphasis on NOW, the present, without much regard for the rich past upon which the present depends. Posting archival photos informs the present, the future, and does not leave us stranded in a disconnected NOW.

  6. Life is too short to waste it for sure !

  7. Sorry, I won't see your photos because I don't use Facebook...I got frustrated with Facebook and I'm no longer a fan of it. I deactivated my account several years ago and I never regreted it.

    If my family and close friends want to contact me, they have my email address and we have Skype. It's fine for some folks but it did not fill a void in my life.

    I have enough of Blogger to keep me busy right now. All this social media can be time consuming if one lets it. I know it has it's good points when used properly but I have seen things that people posted that I found not appropriate at all. However it's great to find and connect some long lost friends.

    I'm sure your old photos were well received by family and friends. It's fun to look back at our roots and seeing how time has changed all those years.

    Like you I always enjoyed watching those old slide shows on the screen when family visited.
    Now we take thousands of digital pictures and flood the media with it. Everyone is a mini celebrity.

  8. You are absolutely correct.
    And...I, too, love going through old photos. It takes me away to a happy place.

  9. I agree. We have so much negative news bombarding us that it's refreshing to see or hear something uplifting.

  10. I am not into negative news and I see that often enough. I used to love seeing old photos and those slideshows which were popular in the 60's and 70's. I hear few people actually print off pictures anymore and that is a shame. I found a relative who had old photos of my dad and his parents from their wedding in 1897! I never had these photos so it was wonderful to find them through facebook but that is one of the few positives on that site. I use it mainly to see pictures

  11. Anonymous2:49 PM

    Again, I agree with you--are you sure we're not related?

  12. Reality has it both: positive aspects as well as negative ones. I consider myself a person that likes to live in the real world, so I'll deal with both. I'll not dismiss negativity, but try to understand what's behind it.

  13. Sunday my oldest son came by and we looked at old photos and tried to match up names and faces. I hope your old pics have names written on them! My son was contacted by a lady who was adopted and found out her mother's last name is the same as ours. My son is trying to help her to see if she's on the family tree. The old photos have new meaning for him! I not a lover of the negative either. That's why I like your blog and your books and your's uplifting, fun, full of common sense, and of course a good dose of humor! Facebook is the place my kids put the family photos on and that's the real reason I use it. I hope you have a good evening and I hope it's cooler down there!

  14. Completely agree about the Facebook posts. I had even thought about composing a "thank you" letter to those who chose not to share their political or religious views. I really do appreciate it.


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